7 junio, 2024

Ode: concept, types and examples

What is an ode?

The ode it is a lyrical poem that is expressed in a high tone or in the form of a song. This poetic composition is of Greek origin, from there the first odes in history are known, which were accompanied by a musical instrument. They were created to exalt a person or object for a special situation

The odes have multiple genres through which the poet expresses various feelings or ways of thinking. These poems can deal with themes of religion, love, heroes… Even in more current times Pablo Neruda wrote odes with everyday themes (food, plants, nature, objects…). The Chilean poet called them Elemental Odes.

This lyrical subgenre can have varied rhyme. They can be free, consonant or assonant; everything will depend on the poet and what he wants to express. Next, an explanation will be given to the different types of odes and some examples of these interesting poetic texts will be shown.

types of ode

pindaric odes

This type of ode is named after the poet Pindar and originated in Ancient Greece. The author made these compositions to pay tribute or highlight any person, event or place in particular. These poems contain 3 stanzas of which 2 have the same distribution.

These lyrical texts are considered the most classic representation of the odes. In many cases these poems were dedicated to athletes who had some triumph. Likewise, to the gods (sacred odes) and the heroes of the time (heroic odes).

horacian odes

These odes have that name as a tribute to Horacio, considered the greatest Latin American poet. These poems are made to entertain some friendship. They usually have more than one verse and have the same rhyme.

anacreontic odes

This type of poetic composition bears its name in honor of Anacreon, a poet of Greek origin. They are known as classic odes and are inspired by love and eroticism.

romantic odes

In this case, the odes do not have a romantic tone like the anacreontic ones. In fact, they are called that because they appeared at the time of Romanticism (18th century). These poems have new changes from the classical odes and also contain more emotion and a subjective tone.

english odes

Also called irregularly rhyming odes, they were elaborated in the Renaissance in a second revival of this genre. In a certain way, the Pindaricas were mixed with the Horacians, but with new perspectives. The poet was inspired by someone to make them.

Examples of short odes

“Ode to Niagara” – Author: José María Heredia

«Tune my lyre, give it to me, I feel
in my shaken and agitated soul
burn inspiration ooh!! how long
in darkness it passed, without my forehead
shine with its light!… Undose Niagara;
your sublime terror could only
return to me the divine gift, that, ruthlessly,
the impious hand robbed me of pain!
Prodigious torrent, calm down, shut up
your terrifying thunder; dispel a bit
the darkness that surrounds you;
let me contemplate your serene face
and my soul is filled with burning enthusiasm”.

«Ode XIX to all saints» – Author: Fray Luis de León

“Then the whole belly,

the Mother of this Light will be sung,

very clear Lucero

in this troubled sea,

of the human lineage faithful lawyer.

divine spirit,

I will not silence your voice, your opposite chest

against the evil dragon;

nor you in oblivion post

that you are willing to defend my life”.

“Ode to sadness” – Author: Pablo Neruda

“SADNESS, beetle

with seven broken legs,

cobweb Egg,

busted rat,

bitch skeleton:

You don’t come in here.

You don’t pass.

go away

Comes back

to the South with your umbrella,

comes back

to the North with your snake’s teeth.

Here lives a poet.

sadness cannot

enter through these doors.

through the windows

the air of the world enters,

the new red roses,

the embroidered flags

of the people and their victories.

You can not.

You don’t come in here.


your bat wings,

I will tread the feathers

that fall from your mantle,

I will sweep up the pieces

from your corpse to

the four corners of the wind,

I will twist your neck

I’ll sew your eyes

i will cut your shroud

and I will bury your rodent bones

under the spring of an apple tree.

“Ode to some pigeons” – Author: Nicanor Parra

«how fun they are

These doves that mock everything

With their little colored feathers

And their huge round bellies.

They go from the dining room to the kitchen.

Like leaves scattered by autumn

And in the garden they settle down to eat

Flies, a bit of everything

They peck at the yellow stones

Or they stand on the bull’s back:

They are more ridiculous than a shotgun

Or that a rose full of lice.

His studied flights, however,

They hypnotize the one-armed and the lame

What do you think you see in them?

The explanation of this world and the other.

Although you should not trust yourself because they have

the smell of the fox,

The cold intelligence of the reptile

And the long experience of the parrot.

They are more hypnotic than the teacher

And that the abbot who falls fat.

But at the slightest carelessness they pounce

like crazy firefighters

They enter the building through the window

And they seize the fund box

Let’s see if ever

We really all group together

And we stand firm

Like hens defending their chickens.»

“Ode of love” – Author: María Mercedes Carranza

“An afternoon that you will never forget

He comes to your house and sits down at the table.

Little by little it will have a place in every room,

His footprints will be on the walls and furniture,

it will untend your bed and fluff the pillow.

Library books, precious fabric of years,

they will accommodate themselves to their liking and likeness,

the photos will change places,

other eyes will look at your customs,

your coming and going between walls and hugs

and the daily noises and smells will be different.

Any afternoon that you will never forget

the one who destroyed your house and inhabited your things

He’ll walk out the door without saying goodbye.

You will have to start to make the house again,

rearrange the furniture, clean the walls,

change the locks, break the portraits,

sweep it all away and go on living.”

“Ode XX” – Author: Ricardo Reis

«You take care, impassable, that you comply, squeezing

your barren, laborious days

in bundles of dry firewood

life without illusion

Your firewood is only weight that you carry

where there is no fire to warm you.

Nor do they bear weight on their shoulders

the shadows we will be

To relax, don’t strike; and, if you will,

better behold the example than riches,

how life is enough

short, not hard.

We rarely use the little we have.

The work is tiring, the gold is not ours.

From us the same fame

she laughs, we won’t see her

when, finished by the Fates, we are

solemn lumps, suddenly ancient,

and more and more shadows,

to the fatal encounter

the dark ship in the dark river,

and the nine embraces of the stygian coldness

and the insatiable lap

from the homeland of Pluto.»

“Ode to the Ball” – Author: Cristóbal Olave

«Oh precious sphere,

You hypnotize me with your power

You go round and round

Like a beautiful mole.

beautiful somersaults

With you I can give

and come to victory

In a large lot.

At the edge of the park

I learned to play

with your crazy jumps

I hoped to achieve

oh ballon d’or

that you shine when you win,

so many revere you

And they put you on an altar.

I wait anxious

The day of playing

and next to you

Being able to enjoy”.

“Ode to music” – Author: Tomás Gutiérrez

“Great sound that relaxes my ear

that expresses feelings and dreams

And with that rhythm it makes me sigh.

you my dearest music

That in good times and in bad times these

In the morning I hear you when I wake up

And when I’m sad you make me happy.

Sweet melody that you are next to me

When I’m sad you make me smile.

when i’m walking

i know i’m not alone

Since I’m listening to you

Even if they call me crazy.

Thanks for being with me,

cheer me up and give me rhythm

Every day

Ode to Joy – Author: Friedrich Schiller

“Joy, Divine Light,

of Elysium, sweet lar,

inflamed let’s get closer

Goddess, to your heavenly altar.

unite again your magic

who separated the rigor.

Fraternize the entire world

of your wings to the heat.

to whom chance has given

true friendship,

who sweet consort finds,

has unparalleled happiness.

in the roundness of the earth

his a soul invoke!

to whom it was not given

would plunge into sorrow!

In the bosom of nature

joy libates the being,

their florida track follow

evils, goods, everywhere.

Kisses, vines, faithful friend

He gave us even death;

delight, to worms;

and to the cherub, a great God.

Like the suns on your way

magna, together!, oh!, march!

and like heroes enjoy

bliss, triumphs and happiness!

Hug each other, oh! millions!

Kiss of Humanity!

Toast heavenly goodness

Father to your peerless entourage.

You prostrate, oh, together

Before the Eternal Creator

Search in the azure, and reign

On the ethereal plane.

Ode «The dark swallows will return» – Author: Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer

«The dark swallows will return

on your balcony their nests to hang,

and again with the wing to its crystals

playing they will call

But those that the flight restrained

your beauty and my happiness to contemplate,

those who learned our names…

Those… won’t come back!

The bushy honeysuckles will return

from your garden the walls to climb,

and again in the evening even more beautiful

its flowers will open.

But those, curdled with dew

whose drops we watched tremble

and fall like tears of the day…

Those… won’t come back!

They will return from love in your ears

the burning words to sound;

your heart from its deep sleep

maybe he will wake up

But mute and absorbed and on their knees

as God is worshiped before his altar,

as I have loved you…; undeceive yourself,

so… they won’t want you!”.

“Ode to pacification” – Author: Mario Benedetti

«I don’t know how far the peacekeepers will go with their metallic noise

of peace

but there are certain insurance brokers that already place policies

against pacification

and there are those who claim the penalty of the garrote for those who do not

they want to be pacified

when the peacekeepers aim of course they shoot to pacify

and sometimes they even pacify two birds with one stone

It is clear that there is always some fool who refuses to be

pacified from behind

or some fool who resists pacification over low heat

we are actually such a peculiar country

that whoever pacifies the pacifiers will be a good pacifier.”

“Ode to Solitude” – Author: José Ángel Valente

«Oh loneliness,

My old and only companion,


listen to me now

When the love

As if by black magic of the left hand

fell from his sky,

More and more radiant, just like rain

Of birds burned, beaten to the point of breaking, and they broke

At last all his bones,

By an adverse and yellow goddess

And you, oh soul,

Consider or meditate how many times

We have sinned in vain against no one

And once again here we were judged,

One more time, oh god, in the dugout

Of infidelity and irreverence.

So consider,

Consider yourself, oh soul,

So that one day you will be forgiven,

While now you listen impassively

Or loose at the end

Of your deadly misery

the infinite fall

from the sonata opus

one hundred twenty six

From Mozart

that turns off in so unusual

suspension of times

The successive image of your guilt

Oh loneliness

My loneliness friend, wash me,

like someone who is born, in your southern waters

and can I find you,

descend from your hand,

come down tonight

in this sevenfold night of tears,

the same seven circles that keep

in it…

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